Did Steven Spielberg's Creative Input Change Cowboys & Aliens' Primary Antagonist? Here's What We Know

Steven Spielberg's advice altered the main antagonist in Cowboys & Aliens while a prequel novel is set to expand the story universe, creator Scott Mitchell Rosenberg reveals.

Published on Jun 12, 2024  |  09:10 PM IST |  48.7K
Steven Spielberg Reportedly Changed The Cowboys & Aliens' Primary Antagonist
Steven Spielberg and Cowboys & Aliens (PC: Getty Images and IMDb)

The Cowboys & Aliens creator Scott Mitchell Rosenberg opened up about the making of the 2011 film, starring Harrison Ford and Daniel Craig. Talking about the making of the film adapted from his graphic novel, Rosenberg revealed that Steven Spielberg’s piece of advice altered the film’s prime antagonist, über-alien, as he teased about the extension of the Cowboys & Aliens universe through a prequel novel.

Steven Spielberg shaped the antagonist of Cowboys & Aliens

The Cowboys & Aliens follows the story of Jake Lonergan (played by Daniel Craig) and Colonel Woodrow Dolarhyde (played by Harrison Ford) as they encounter an alien invasion. As the aliens continue to cause havoc along their way Jake and Woodrow work together with the natives to stop these hostile species from further causing destruction. 

Talking about the film’s prime antagonist, über-alien, Scott Mitchell Rosenberg shared that the character was designed keeping in mind the advice from Steven Spielberg. As per the creator of the show, über-alien’s designs were revised over and over to make it more dreadful, as he revealed the advice they received from Spielberg. 

“Just one example of Steven’s creative input was his suggestion that the main antagonist alien be more anthropomorphic with distinctive translucent patches on its body. This ‘über-alien’ would be distinct, having a translucent skin with a texture more akin to a soft-shell crab. Steven frequently demonstrated that he had his finger on the pulse of what audiences wanted,” Rosenberg stated in his interview with Syfy. 


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The creator of Cowboys & Aliens talks about the upcoming prequel novel 

Further in the interview, when asked about his plans to extend the novel series, Scott Mitchell Rosenberg shared some good news for all fans. Rosenberg stated that the production of a prequel novel, Cowboys & Aliens: Civil War, is underway and is expected to be released in the summer of 2024.

“We’re in production on a prequel graphic novel called Cowboys & Aliens: Civil War, which will come out in Summer 2024. In the story, the aliens are having a civil war of sorts when enslaved worker aliens cause the ship to crash, so they can seek help from Earth’s inhabitants against Rado Dar and his forces,” he added.

But that’s not it as the creator of the series also expressed his wish to see the reboot of the film in a TV or film adaptation, sharing his wish to see the story running from a few years ago before the invasion. In the reboot, Rosenberg expresses his wish to run a fast-paced story with more humor and genuine scary encounters.


The creator of the show further hoped to create an adaption that would bring the audiences over the edge of their seats. Rosenberg also thanked the viewers for their love and support for the 2011 film, marking that the film has been aging very nicely as he revealed receiving a large amount of fans’ DM on the Cowboy & Aliens Facebook page. 

Well, it looks like Rosenberg is more than keen to revisit the epic story of Cowboys & Aliens. As the makers plan to drop the prequel novel, the 2011 film, Cowboys & Aliens, is available for streaming on Peacock.

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Is Cowboys & Aliens a good movie?
Cowboys & Aliens is a unique action-thriller with a serious tone, but opinions vary on its entertainment value.

What is Cowboys & Aliens based on?
Cowboys & Aliens is based on a 2006 graphic novel created by Scott Mitchell Rosenberg.

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Vivek Kumar
Vivek Kumar
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Vivek Kumar is a young, enthusiastic writer with a natural talent for expressing his thoughts through writing. Currently



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